List Price: $829,000
Sale Price: $752,000
The Property: In September 2006, this 14-room house on a corner lot in Northbrook was sold for $1.9 million. Five months later a lender recorded a lis pendens—a notice that a foreclosure suit would be filed against those buyers. That began a long process that included further actions by the lenders, the eviction of the residents (who vacated the house in summer 2008), a new listing at full price for the bank, and, eventually, a steeply discounted listing.

Nick Libert of Exit All Pro Realty was the second agent recruited by the bank to unload the house. He got the listing in November 2008 and priced the house at $999,000. “We then dropped the price gradually every few weeks,” Libert says. By the middle of February 2009, the price had dropped to $829,000. The house went under contract on February 18th and closed February 27th at $752,000—39.6 percent of the September 2006 sale price.

Built in 1990, the red brick colonial has six bedrooms, a three-car garage, and a second kitchen and a vast entertainment space in the basement. Libert had installed new stainless steel appliances in the kitchen and arranged a credit from the foreclosing bank to cover the repair of some water damage in the basement. “The buyer could essentially move in the day of closing,” Libert says, “which you certainly can’t say about some foreclosures.”

Price Points: This is not the only foreclosure on this very attractive block in Northbrook. Just two doors down on the other side of the street is a builder house, valued at $1.85 million in 2006, that was foreclosed and sold in September for $825,000. Last June, I wrote about that house and another on the street that was listed for sale conventionally, examining the drag a foreclosure might have on its neighbors. The house that was being sold conventionally then (and that is, on the outside, almost identical to today’s property) has still not sold. It’s now priced at $1,289,000. The impact the two foreclosures will have on that third house can’t be known until it sells. But Libert, like others in his field, believes that, because foreclosures have become so widespread, they will be flagged down the line as anomalies and not remain a permanent black mark in the comps. A neighboring foreclosure, he says, “certainly doesn’t help ease sellers’ or buyers’ minds regarding values in the area, [but] I think we will look back on these two and similar sales in the area and discount the fact that they were bank-owned and sold well below true value.”

Listing Agent: Nick Libert of Exit All Pro Realty, 312-493-0920;